Sardar Patel took charge of the states department in
July 1947. He sensed the urgent and imperative need
of the integration of princely states. He followed an
iron handed policy. He made it clear that he did not
recognize the right of any state to remain
independent and in isolation, within India.
Patel also appealed to the patriotic and national
sentiments of the Princes and invited them to join the
forming of a democratic constitution in the national
interest. He persuaded them to surrender defence,
foreign affairs and communication to the government
of India.
He, by his tactics, broke the union of separatist
princes. By August 15, 1947 all except Hyderabad,
Junagarh and Kashmir acceded to India. He
thereafter carried three fold process of assimilation,
centralization and unification of states. The states
were amalgamated to form a union and that union
was merged with the Union of India.
He handled the Junagarh and Hyderabad crisis as a
seasoned statesman. Nawab of Junagarh wanted to
accede to Pakistan. When the people revolted, Patel
intervened. Indian Government took over the
administration. Patel merged it with India by holding
a plebiscite.
Patel with an iron fisted hand subdued the Nizam.
When the Nizam boasted anti-India feelings and let
loose a blood both by the Razakars, Patel decided
upon police action. He ordered the army to March into
Hyderabad. The Nizam surrendered and Hyderabad
was acceded to India.
Thus Sardar Patel ensured, by his calculated methods,
the absorption of a multitude of princely states into
the Indian Union. Without a civil war, he secured the
solidarity of the nation.